Egypt Opens Two Of Its Oldest Pyramids To Visitors
By Danielle Dorsey
Two of Egypt’s oldest pyramids, located just 25 miles south of the capital of Cairo, are now open to visitors for the first time in over 50 years.
Antiquities Minister Khaled el-Anany told reporters that tourists are not able to visit the Bent Pyramid and the satellite pyramid in the Dahshur royal necropolis, which has been deemed a USESCO World Heritage Site.
The Bent Pyramid was constructed around 2600 BC during the Old Kingdom of the Pharaoh of Sneferu and stands apart with two internal structures. According to El-Anany, the Bent Pyramid represents a transitional point in pyramid construction that occurred between the Djoser Step Pyramid (2667-2648 B.C.) and the Meidum Pyramid (also about 2600 B.C.).
In the announcement, El-Anany revealed that Egyptian archaeologists have uncovered a collection of stone, clay, and wooden sarcophagi, including some with mummies, in the area. Archaeologists also found wooden funerary masks along with tools used for cutting stones that date back to the Late Period (664-332 B.C.).
Also uncovered were large stone blocks with limestone and granite fragments that indicate the existence of ancient graves in the area.
Egypt has been promoting tourism to its ancient pyramids and hopes that these new discoveries will boost its tourism industry, which is still recovering after the 2011 Arab Spring uprising.